Chouara Tannery, Fes (must see)
The most notable feature of Chouara and the other local tanneries is the numerous stone vats filled with different colored dyes and white liquids. Hides of cows, sheep, goats, and camels are processed by first soaking in a series of the white liquids – made from various mixtures of cow urine, pigeon feces, quicklime, salt, and water – in order to clean and soften the tough skins. This process takes two to three days and prepares the hides to readily absorb the dyes.
They are then soaked in the dyeing solutions, which use natural colorants such as poppy for red, indigo for blue, and henna for orange. After the dyeing, they are dried under the sun. The resulting leather is then sold to other craftsmen, who use it to produce Morocco's famed leather goods, such as bags, coats, shoes, and slippers, prized for their high quality. The entire leather production process comprises manual labor only and involves no modern machinery, and has retained methods unchanged since medieval times.
Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Fes. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.
Chouara Tannery on Map
Walking Tours in Fes, Morocco
In the year 789 Idris I founded the city and the Idrisid dynasty. The city was two settlements on either side of the river. In the 11th century, Sultan Yusuf ibn Tashfin established Almoravid rule. He united the settlements into Fes el-Bali. The Almoravids were... view more
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.7 Km or 2.3 Miles
Still, Fez's Ville Nouvelle is as much 'real' Morocco as any donkey-packed lane in the old city.... view more
Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 Km or 1.7 Miles